« AnkstesnisTęsti »
lent nature, these two brothers with their hot on the altar of fraternal devotion. But then it tempers and sharp tongues remained linked to seems he would readily have got married if his each other by a passionate affection which knows brother had wished it. It is no use, in fact, tryno break, coldness, or distrust. They may dis- ing to find spots in the purity of his disinterestedagree, they may disapprove each other's conduct, ness. After he had commanded ships, and had and then each stands to his guns with a valor been governor of a West Indian island, on his becoming the sons of old col d'argent. But return to France he writes to his brother like a never a trace of bitterness, alienation, or offense, lad in his teens: “If you consider that I ought can be spied. Soft, hushed, loving words conclude to come to Paris, let me know, and supply me every remonstrance, every altercation. With a with enough to live upon. If you think it best, sob of affection, they fall on each other's breast I am ready to stay here at Brest, and to live very with peaceful confidence that their love can never quietly as regards expense.” The Marquis can fail, Truly, a love passing the love of woman, not bear this, and replies: “As regards what and, between two such stalwart, self-reliant men, you say about staying down there, tears came to very beautiful and touching. They had found my eyes in thinking of the greatness, simplicity, indeed the true secret of lasting affection, in com- and goodness of your heart. When you seriplete and utter unselfishness in all their mutual ously propose to go and hide yourself in a hole dealings, or rather in the settled practice of each, in Brittany, I should be sorry not to put on recto think of the other always in preference to him- ord that I owe you fifteen thousand livres. You self. The affectionate tutoiement can not be must come here as soon as you can, and I only rendered, but even in the cold second person wait for you to clear myself out, and you will plural some of their warmth will no doubt ap- find all you
need." pear. “If I had not been your brother," says Among other things, the younger Mirabeau the Bailli, “and had only known you by chance, was a Knight of Malta, where he rose to the I should have been your friend. I have more grade of bailli, the title by which he is generally confidence in you than in myself, which is not to known. The Order of the Knights of Malta, desay that I am always of your opinion.” “I de- generate successors of the Knights of Rhodes, clare to you,” says the Marquis, "as solemnly as and of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem, had if on the point of death, that since a certain day, become in the eighteenth century a ridiculous somewhat distant now, for then I was stronger and somewhat scandalous anachronism. Rethan you" (the Bailli was much the larger and cruited among the younger sons of nobles' famimore powerful man), “when I gave you a good lies in all Europe, it had decayed into a collection thrashing, not without some good cuffs in re- of extravagant and licentious revelers, who joined turn, from that day and all others ever since, I it partly from vanity, but more still in expectation have never had a matter of which I have con- of obtaining one or more of the rich benefices, cealed from you the smallest particle.” And to priories, commanderies, etc., which the Order had such words the deeds correspond. Questions of to give. It was not a company to suit the grave money, the most vulgar and common source of and thoughtful Bailli, and for twenty-four years quarrel between relatives, between this singular he never went near the place, having seen enough pair give constant occasion for mutual self-sacri- of it and its ways in his youth. He liked hard fice and endearment. The Bailli never would useful work, and was never anxious about the allow his elder brother to pay him his légitime, pay it might bring him. But his brother, who or portion of fifty thousand francs, to which he has him in charge with his own consent, as we was entitled under his father's will; it would be have seen, has resolved that this Knighthood of a wrong to the family, he says. The younger Malta shall produce something of tangible value brother, who certainly has the advantage in this to the family; that the Bailli by taking the proper contest of generosity and self-abnegation, pushes steps shall obtain a rich commandery worth many his deference to his senior to a degree which thousand livres a year, that will be a great help would be affected and suspicious in a man of to the common finances, which are far from prosless transparent candor and sincerity. He leaves perous, and threatening to become worse. The it entirely to the Marquis to decide whether he proper steps are serious and involve an enormous shall get married or not. “If you judge that it outlay in ready money, and the return is unceris for the good of the family that I should leave tain in date if not altogether. They consist in offspring, you will know what to do in reference this, that the Bailli shall go to Malta and accept to a certain young lady.” But the good Bailli, it the post of General of the Galleys, to which his must be confessed, had one fault with all his age and rank entitle him, hold the office the usual virtues; he was a confirmed misogynist. So time of two years, and then put in his claim, which perhaps, if his elder forbade marriage, he was in can hardly be refused to an ex-general, for one of no great danger of sacrificing a tender passion the superior commanderies. The Marquis's plan is cut and dried; for him the whole scheme lies better wine than they ever had before, and says in a nutshell. He will find the money, the Bailli to them, “ As it was only got for you, you shall must go and make his fortune, and there is an have it while it lasts.” “We do not deserve to end of it. “This is all very fine,” the Bailli an- have such a general,” one of them appreciatingly swers; “but supposing I die before getting the said. In a word, by his sumptuosities and punccommandery, you will lose your money, and the tual payments, the Bailli acquitted himself in his family will be half ruined through me.” He im- odd position with his usual exactness to universal plores his brother to think twice before embark- satisfaction. Only on one point did he risk near· ing in so venturesome a scheme. He is quite ly complete failure, but it was a point on which content to live quietly, without regret or impa- he would brook no expostulation. His hatred of tience, waiting for a commandery which will come rogues nearly wrecked him in Malta as it had in time to him by mere seniority; he does not done in Guadaloupe. The Grand Master Pinto, care much what happens. As a consummate who was his friend, was also in extreme old age, master of Entsagen, detachment, indifference to and his probable, almost certain, successor was outward goods of every description, the Bailli the Bailli de Tencin (a near relative of D'Alemhas not his equal. For he differs from the reli- bert's mother), a man without probity or courage, gious quietist, who cares for no sublunary thing, and altogether offensive to the moral sense. His by his zeal as an officer, his ardor for reform, his relations with such a man as the Bailli de Mirapatriotism, his ceaseless energy. However, the beau might safely be predicted, and they soon Marquis will listen to no objections, and the Bailli became openly hostile. But here was a threatgoes to Malta, where for two years he will have ening prospect. If old Pinto died, as in the to spend money like water. As Malta produces course of nature he soon must, and Tencin sucnothing, all commodities have to be sent from ceeded him, what hope was there for the rich France. The Marquis looks after everything, and commandery in view of which all this lavish exdispatches the means and materials of a two pense had been incurred ? None whatever. Still years' feasting before his brother gets there. nothing shall make the brave Bailli bend the knee "Linen, furniture, clothes, liveries covered with to Baal. “If Providence,” he says, “puts me gold, glass, porcelain, wine, liqueurs, not forget- like Job on a dunghill, and ruins my family, noting the cuffs of Valenciennes lace indispensable thing shall induce me to give my vote to a man to a General of Galleys, and six silver buckets to whom I consider unworthy.” cool the bottles, all accompanied with enormous Though we may be certain that he would provisions for the table,” costing in round num- have stood the test, he happily was never put to ber something like one hundred and fifty thou- it. Instead of Pinto, Tencin died, and at once sand francs, all to disappear in idle pomp and liberated several of the richest commanderies of riotous living, very harmful to everybody con- the Order. After a little delay one of them was cerned.
given to the good Bailli, who thus secured an inTo such a character as the Bailli's, simple, come for life of some fifty thousand francs a 'frugal, and detesting show, these two years of year. reveling at Malta must have been as unpleasant It was just in time. The Marquis de Miraand distasteful as any he ever experienced. To beau, with his abortive speculations and ruinous the man of naturally sober and moderate tastes, lawsuits, from easy circumstances had fallen into wasteful extravagance and profusion are perhaps a condition akin to poverty. Whether the Bailli, more offensive than parsimony and stinting are with his now well-filled purse, was ready to help to the self-indulgent and luxurious. To be com- him need not be said. But it presently strikes pelled to live with, and constantly entertain, friv- him that he (the Bailli) may die first, and then olous gormandizers and topers, must have been, what will become of his brother? He soon hits one would think, a trial too heavy to be borne. upon an expedient, viz., to make an arrangement The Bailli bears it with the quiet stoicism he with the authorities at Malta, by which, on conbrings to all things. He does not seem to have sideration that he during his life drew only a been wearied to death, as unconsciously he must moiety of his emoluments, the other moiety have been. He expresses no nausea and disgust should devolve on his brother after his own death. at the company he has to keep, at the time he An offer so advantageous to the Order would has to waste. At his brother's persuasion he certainly have been accepted, but the Marquis has made a venture, and he waits for the result. promptly interposes his veto. “As regards muHe is indeed at times terribly anxious lest the tilating yourself for me, my answer is that I want money should be spent in vain. But in the mean you to be rich ; and, by my faith, if I ever lose while he spends his money for a given object, you, I shall not need anything fifteen days after!” just as a naval officer would spend ammunition Space fails to say more of this interesting to carry a fort. He gives the roisterers more and work at present. I have dwelt chiefly on one
individual, because he is at once very interesting posite ways, especially the last. Most interesting and little known. But several other characters, and original of all, the old Marquis, “ the crabbed whose fortunes, are recounted in these pages, are Friend of Man," is well worthy of the elaborate well fitted to attract attention. A third brother, study which M. de Loménie has devoted to him. Louis Alexandre, whose career was short and Not only is his life, but his works and their connot always creditable, was evidently no common- nection with some of the most important lines place man, and full of the Mirabeau fire and ori- of speculation in the eighteenth century are disginality. The three women who appear in the cussed with a quiet fullness and mastery which book, the two Marquises de Mirabeau, and Ma- render this book a very valuable addition to the dame de Pailly, are interesting figures in very op- higher literature on that period.
JAS. COTTER MORISON, in Macmillan's Magazine.
SCHOPENHAUER ON MEN, BOOKS, AND MUSIC.
ANY readers who have neither leisure nor of mankind-it may be excellent citizens and
inclination to master Schopenhauer's heads of families, but without pretense either to scheme of metaphysics, nor German enough to originality, thought, or learning, and dominated read his non-philosophical works with ease, may by the commonplace, he entertains a positive yet like to know what the great pessimist thought aversion. It was less the incapacity of ordinary on men considered as social and intellectual be- mortals that irritated him than their love of talkings, on books and authors, lastly on music and ing about what they do not understand, and that art generally; topics on which he mused per- worst of all conceits, the conceit of knowledge petually, and had much to say. The metaphysi- without the reality. Stupidity was Schopencian was ever the keen observer to whom no- hauer's bugbear; mental obtuseness, in his eyes, thing human was alien. He could not be said to the cardinal sin, the curse of Adam, the plaguelive in the world, but he knew it as few practical spot in the intellectual world; and whenever opmen have done, and not only its outer but its portunity arose he fell to the attack with Quixotic inner life, its æsthetic as well as its material fury and impatience. “Conversation between a side.
man of genius and a nonentity," he says someInsight led him further than experience leads where, “ is like the casual meeting of two travelthe majority, and, theoretic pessimist par excel- ers going the same way, the first mounted on a lence though he was, as a moral teacher he has spirited steed, the other on foot. Both will soon nevertheless some valuable lessons to give us, get heartily tired of each other, and be glad to and cheerful lessons, too. What, indeed, will part company." many readers ask with pardonable incredulity, Equally good is the following psychological can this cynic of cynics, this uncompromising reflection : misanthrope and unparalleled misogynist, teach
The seal of commonness, the stamp of vulgarity the rest of mankind ? A little patience, good written upon the greater number of physiognomies reader, and the question shall be satisfactorily we meet with, is chiefly accounted for in the fact of answered. It must first be borne in mind that the entire subjection of the intellect to the will ; Schopenhauer does not profess to instruct the consequently, the impossibility of grasping things great, unthinking, unlettered multitude, the except in their relation to the individual self. It is
common herd,” for whom he can not conceal quite the contrary with the expression of men of his contempt. He says, somewhere, “ Nature is genius or richly endowed natures, and herein conintensely aristocratic with regard to the distribu- sists the family likeness of the latter throughout the tion of intellect. The demarkations she has laid world. We see written on their faces the emancipadown are far greater than those of birth, rank, mind over volition ; hence the lofty brow, the clear,
tion of the intellect from the will, the supremacy of wealth, or caste in any country, and in Nature's aristocracy, as in any other, we find a thousand natural joyousness we find there in perfect keeping
contemplative glance, the occasional look of superplebeians to one noble, many millions to one
with the pensiveness of the other features, notably prince, the far greater proportion consisting of the mouth. This relation is finely indicated in the mere Pöbel, canaille, mob.” For the latter class saying of Giordano Bruno: “In tristitia, hilaris; in ifrom his point of view the preponderating bulk hilaritate, tristis."
Here he brings his sledge-hammer upon the the reverse is the case; and this objectivity, or dunderheads without mercy:
emancipation from the will, enables them to live
outside the restricted little world of self; and, Brainless pates are the rule, fairly furnished ones the exception, the brilliantly endowed very rare, ge
instead of being interested in things only as they nius a portentum. How otherwise could we account
immediately affect their own wills—i. e., interfor the fact that out of upward of eight hundred ests, feelings, and passions—they are interested millions of existing human beings, and after the in the larger, wider life of thought and humanichronicled experiences of six thousand years, so much ty. “Every man of genius,” he says someshould still remain to discover, to think out and to where, “ regards the world with purely objective be said?
interest-indeed, as a foreign country"; and in
another passage, following out the same line of True enough, it required a Pascal to invent a thought, he gives an apt simile by way of illuswheelbarrow, and doubtless we must wait for
trating his theories : another before discovering the cure for a smoking chimney and other every-day nuisances. But
The average individual (Normal Mensch) is enSchopenhauer does not content himself with grossed in the vortex and turmoil of existence, to scourging stupidity; he goes to the bottom of which he is bound hand and foot by his will. The the matter, and, at the risk of touching meta- objects and circumstances of daily life are ever pres. physical ground, we extract the following eluci- ent to him, but of such taken objectively he has not dation of an every-day mystery. Who has not the faintest conception. He is like the merchants gazed with puzzledom on the initial letters, names,
on the Bourse at Amsterdam, who take in every and even mottoes cut upon ancient public monu
word of what their interlocutor says, but are wholly ments in all countries, from the pyramids of insensible to the surging noise of the multitude
around them. Egypt to the monoliths of Carnac, from the crumbling walls of the Dionysiac theatre at
Cynical although this may sound, no one can Athens to the tombs in the Campagna? No write more genially than Schopenhauer when on thing is too solemn or too sacred for these incor- his favorite theme of genius. If he castigates rigible scratchers or scribblers, who seem, indeed, his arch-enemy—the Normal Mensch, nonentity, to have made the journey to the uttermost ends dunderhead, fool, as the case may be—he glows of the world for the sake of carving John Smith with poetic ardor and descants with appropriate or Tom Brown on some conspicuous relic of warmth on the Genialer : which word we may former ages. As far as we know, Schopenhauer take to mean the man of genius as well as the is the first to explain this mischievous and ab- gifted, the intellectually genial, the uncommon as surd habit of the tourists whose name is Legion : compared with the commonplace in humanity. It
By far the greater part of humanity she says) ar was not only that Schopenhauer realized the worth wholly inaccessible to purely intellectual enjoyments. and value of genius and rare mental endowments They are quite incapable of the delight that exists to the world at large, but he comprehended what in ideas as such ; everything standing in a certain those precious gifts are to the individual himself. relation to their own individual will—in other words, He understood that inscrutable felicity, that hapto themselves and their own affairs—in order to in- piness past finding out, neither to be bestowed terest them, it is necessary that their wills should be
nor acquired, which is based on intellectual suacted upon, no matter in how remote a degree. A premacy, a high spirit, a noble, unworldly nature. naive illustration of this can be seen in every-day Characters of the loftiest type had inexhaustible trifles; witness the habit of carving names in cele- fascinations for him ; it was the wine with which brated places. This is done in order that the indi- he loved to intoxicate himself ; the ambrosia on vidual may in the faintest possible manner influence or act upon the place, since he is by it not influenced which he fed like an epicure. He never wearies or acted upon at all.
of descanting upon the nature of that true joy
which, to use the words of Seneca, is a serious To understand Schopenhauer's classification thing, “The joy born of thought and intellectual of mankind we should master his metaphysical beauty." Would that space permitted a translascheme; but, for our present purpose, the follow- tion of his entire chapter entitled “Von Dem, ing explanation will suffice: The world of dun- was Einer ist,” “ Parerga,” vol. i.; for this, if derheads—the stupid, the ignorant, and the self- nothing else, would put Schopenhauer before us sufficient—are, according to his theory, to be in the light of a moral teacher, inculcating the distinguished from the intellectual, the gifted, the superiority of spiritual, moral, and intellectual high-souled, and the noble-minded, in the sub- truth over material good and worldly well-being. jectivity of their intellect—in other words, the “Happiness depends on what we are—on our insubjection of intellect to will; while with the dividuality. For only that which a man has in choice spirits, the flower and élite of mankind, himself, which he carries with him into solitude,
which none can give or take away, is intrinsically mankind, since in substance it amounts to this: his"; and elsewhere he says:
Wise men and fools, thinkers and empty-pates, As an animal remains perforce shut up in the illuminating spirits and bores—he is never tired narrow circle to which nature has condemned it, our
of drawing the distinction between them, and endeavors to make our domestic pets happy being ringing the changes on their respective merits limited by their capacities, so is it with human be- and demerits. Bitter, cynical, sarcastic as he is, ings. The character or individuality of each is the his strictures are for the most part true, and if measure of his possible happiness, meted out to him boredom or stupidity, like other human infirmibeforehand, natural capacities having for once and ties, admit of alleviation, Schopenhauer shows for all set bounds to his intellectual enjoyments: are the way. All that he has to say on education, these capacities narrow, then no endeavors or influ- the cultivation of good habits in youth, the proper ences from without, nothing that men or joys can do subjection of the passions to reason, is admirafor him, suffice to lead an individual beyond the mea- ble. He, as usual, goes to the root of the matsure of the commonplace, and he is thrown back ter, and begins with trying to hammer into the upon mere material enjoyments, domestic life, sad or understandings of his countrypeople those elecheerful as the case may be, mean companionship mentary notions of hygiene and physical training and vulgar pastime, culture being able to do little in
we find so wanting among them: widening the circle. For the highest, the most varied, the most lasting enjoyments are those of the As we ought above all things to cultivate the intellect, no matter how greatly in youth we may de- habit of cheerfulness, and as nothing less affects it ceive ourselves as to the fact. Hence it becomes than wealth, and nothing more so than bodily health, clear how much our happiness depends on what we
we should strive after the highest possible degree of are, while for the most part fate or chance bring into health, by means of temperance and moderation, computation only what we have, or what we appear physical as well as mental ; two hours' brisk moveto be.
ment in the open air daily (Heavens! what do Ger
man professors say to that? and the next prescription Not in this passage only, but in a dozen others, also must alarm them still more), and the free use of Schopenhauer has contrasted the existence of the cold water, also dietary rules. worldling, the devotee of business or pleasure, the materialist, or the empty-pated, living, intellectu- All who are familiar with German domestic ally speaking, from hand to mouth, with that of life know how, even in the best educated classes, the thinker, the student, the man of wide cul- such things are still neglected, to the great detriture and many-sided knowledge and aspiration. ment of health, sedentary habits especially being “There is no felicity on earth like that which a carried to a pitch which appears to ourselves inbeautiful and fruitful mind finds at its happiest credible. When Schopenhauer reprimands his moments in itself," he writes ; and this considera- countrymen severely upon their want of common tion leads him to some rather uncharitable re- sense in these matters, we feel the strictures to marks upon society, so called, and its unsatisfac- be deserved, and must remember that he wrote toriness in so far as the Genialer, intellectual or thirty years ago; his voice being among the first, genial-minded, are concerned :
if not the very first, raised in Germany on behalf The more a man has in himself, the less he needs а
of soap-and-water, and exercise. In a sentence of others, and the less they can teach him. This su
he happily enunciates the primary principles of premacy of intelligence leads to unsociableness. Ay; education, not considered as merely a system of could the quality of society be compensated by quan- instruction, but in the comprehensive sense of the tity, it might be worth while to live in the world !
word : Unfortunately, we find, on the contrary, a hundred fools in the crowd to one man of understanding! life in its various relations, from the original, not a
Above all things, children should learn to know The brainless, on the other hand, will seek compan- copy. Instead of making haste to put books in their ionship and pastime at any price. For in solitude, hands, we should teach them by degrees the nature when all of us are thrown upon our own resources, of things and the relation in which human beings what he has in himself will be made manifest. Then stand to each other. sighs the empty-pated, in his purple and fine linen, under the burden of his wretched Ego, while the From education we pass to the subject of man rich in mental endowments fills and animates culture, so called; in other words, that self-eduthe dreariest solitude with his own thoughts. Ac- cation which men and women pursue for themcordingly we find that every one is sociable and selves throughout the various stages of their excraves society in proportion as he is intellectually istence. We find such a process going on in all poor and ordinary. For we have hardly a choice in classes. Some people have one way of instructthe social world between solitude and commonplace- ing themselves, some another; but we may fairly ness.
take it for granted that books are or profess to So much for Schopenhauer's classification of be the principal instructors of adult humanity.